'Why is that there, Mummy?'
Nose pressed to tourist bus window,
Inquisitive mind, a need to know.
On the sidewalk outside the Armoury ...
Why is it there for all to see?
'It's a tank, from the war.'
He didn't ask 'What's it for?'
He knows about machines of war.
He knows about things that go ka-boom!! and ka-pow!!
'Mummy, why is it there now?'
And then, as if on cue,
I saw the sign he couldn't read.
Dieppe – 8 August – 1942.
Should one try to explain what this tank had seen –
the bloody slaughter that was Dieppe?
Surely it's time to let go ... and yet
This child wants to know, in 2013.
'Why, mummy, why?'
I waited. There was no reply.
J Bandidt © August, 2013